“El Poncho” And The Others

Very funny, eh, ah, no?

That Ezequiel “El Poncho” Lavezzi did not enjoy the privilege of proper breeding is not the reason for this blog post. His effrontery in sitting on the papal (or I should say “episcopal”) throne, having himself photographed, and even posting the picture on social media sites is not new. I read about the fact, and saw the photo, at the time, but life's too short and I chose to write about other issues.

What I would like to stress today is not the boorish and disrespectful behaviour of the above mentioned “Poncho”, but the astonishing reaction of many either around him, or reading the news, and what the episode tells us about the man occupying – ahem, almost exclusively – the throne.

The Vatican has guards, I am told. People whose job is, erm, to guard something. I am sure they know how to do their job. That they failed to prevent such antics can only be attributed to their persuasion that they would have been rebuked by Francis if they had enforced proper conduct. It is not unreasonable – in fact, it is very, very reasonable – to assume if the guards has enforced the protocol Francis would have rebuked them as too rigid and too formal, and would have asked them to allow the boys to have some fun and take some photos; we are joyous people who don't do such things as minding propriety and counting rosaries, eh, ah, no? The guards look stupid, the bishop looks good, the idiots rejoice. Everything normal, then.

Almost as bad as the climate created by Francis is the behaviour of those who write comments on Catholic sites and minimise the fact. Boors themselves (like “El Poncho”) they just don't get it, or play dumb so that they do not have to.

Symbols are powerful, and if one wants to destroy or damage an institution one must attack its symbols.

Pope Francis knows it, which is why he attacks the institution of the Papacy through its very symbols as much as he can: the “bishop of Rome” meme, the refusal to wear the Mozzetta or the red shoes, or the repeated shows of simplicity are all meant to reach a double effect: undermine the institution as they extol the man.

The uneducated elements – who are the vast majority – immediately pick the message, and have nothing to say against a footballer sitting on the Throne of Peter. A throne, as Sandro Magister points out, unfit for Beethoven but fit for Ezequiel “El Poncho” Lavezzi. Unsurprisingly, most don't have a problem with it.

This is a papacy for boors, and philistines.

They'll enjoy Francis all right.



Posted on August 23, 2013, in Catholicism, Conservative Catholicism, Traditional Catholicism and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 18 Comments.

  1. I have pictures in my mind Mundabor. Memories.

    My saintly mother leaving St. Thomas’ Church in Bungay, Suffolk, crossing herself and bowing to the Tabernacle at the door to the church porch when leaving Mass. Her beautifully reverent genuflections. Her little quietly-spoken prayers as she went about her daily nine-children grind of washing, ironing, cleaning, cooking. My father with his head in his hands in prayer. Teaching us the catechism as he drove us to and from school.
    Setting up the crib every Christmas, with such love. Feeling very close to that little plaster baby Jesus lying there next to the chipped donkey and the cow. Our mother watching over us as we did it, then feeding us with mince pies. Sunday evening Compline followed by Benediction and the regular Stations of the Cross, so many people on their knees. True worship of the Son of God. Shedding tears as a little boy as Fr. O’Hara carried the wooden Cross through the church on Good Friday. The silence of the congregation. It was so evidently very serious.

    Contrast that Catholic world of rural England, in great rude health, of the late 1960’s with the infantilism, the hatred of seriousness, the horror of intellectuality, the banality of the thought, the rank idiocy of the Hierarchy, the open Protestantism, the open banqueting you can say with homosexuality, the heresy, the grin of the demon you see on display from the destroyers, the betrayers, the bastards we have now. I can’t say it in English so I will in Russian – [ edited by blog censorship ]. And apologies to anyone who understood that.

    I have other pictures in my mind. Other memories.

    Being made worried at my parents’ bewilderment at the Revolution, their grief as it all began to sink in, their growing anger, my father’s increasing rage. Being withdrawn from ordinary parish life (which I have not had since the age of around six years old) and going to Mass in dusty halls and flats of retired priests, or priests put out to grass by their Bishops because they refused to say the New Mass. Being looked at deep in the eyes for what seemed an eternity, and then blessed, by Archbishop Lefebvre when I was nine or ten. Walking my mother around her bedroom. The trip took her around 30 minutes, she has advanced Alzheimers. Seeing her stop at a little bookshelf, pick up her prayer book from her own childhood (1930’s), pick it up, consider it for long seconds and then kiss it, crossing herself. She doesn’t know her own children anymore but she knows her little prayer book. I collapsed into tears.

    My depths of my hatred for the people who have done this to the Church cannot be plumbed. They have destroyed what could not be destroyed. They have thrown away the greatest world culture that has ever existed. They feed the faithful that remain with stones. They refuse to accept anything, take no responsibility, stick a middle finger up at Christ and His Catholic Faith and at us. I dream of punching these bloody people in the face very, very hard. Sure I am fighting my parents’ battle for them. My father was involved in the early Traditionalist movement. These are holy people, full of faith. Their instinct was RIGHT.

    I cannot abide so-called “conservative” Catholics. There is much worse out there.

    All I need to know about your average modern “Catholic” is that they are as one with the militant queers and militant atheists (often the same people of course) when it comes to CATHOLICS – I mean REAL Catholics. All these groups hate Catholicism. THAT is how far the Apostasy has gone.

    These BASTARDS. Pope Ratzinger [edited]. Yes, he recanted in his heart later. And came to the throne of Peter. And got off it. COWARD! He’s no better than the rest of them.

    And as for the Argentinian [edited]. There are no words.

    • Exceptionally long post, Benedict; published only because, well, exceptionally beautiful.

      One can only imagine, but probably never understand, the tragedy that went on in the life of your parents – congratulations, by the way -. We look at the devastation fifty years later, but to them it was a cataclysm never happened before, the crumbling of a way of life.

      Having said that, this blog has its limits, and grossly offensive words directed to the Holy Father are not accepted.


    • An excellent post, beautifully written, I and no doubt many others have been wretched cowards , against the generation of whom you write, there is little we can do but to beg pardon. ‘The Living Flame’ records them well. They are our recusants, by whose efforts there IS a true Faith in these Isles.

      This sort of thing is as much a call to battle as Roland’s trump at Rencesvalles, up for Christendom, let not the efforts of your parents or whoever else go dishonoured with the rot that the Faith and the Council can mingle, or you can have the Faith and ignore the Council, or whatever other ceaseless permutation you can come up with. Thank you very much for this.

  2. Something very mysterious is afoot. Here we have our Pope Emeritus extolling the charisma of his successor, this philistine iconoclast. Like with Obama and Hitler sport is elevated to an unseemingly prominent, almost ideological level. Yes, Beethoven is bad, something for wicked renaissance princes. I feel very orphaned but will soldier on.

    • I think Benedict’s praise of Francis’ “charisma” is rather a polite form of disagreement. He has not praised anything in him that one would expect from a Pope, rather a character trait like many others.

      The poor chap cannot be expected to criticise his successor, or to be simply silent when asked about him. What is he supposed to say? “Oh, great charisma” is a good and polite way out.

      I’m sure in his own praying times he has quite different thoughts, and not at all pleasant.


  3. It’s disappointing but not surprising to see Catholic bloggers with the attitude, “What’s the big deal?! If the pope doesn’t have a problem with it–humble and self-effacing as he is–why should we?” Can they honestly imagine one of the saints doing as Pocho has done–or not being horrified by the total lack of reverence–on the part of both Pocho and the “bishop of Rome”–that this action implies?
    Reverence, as Dietrich von Hildebrand has written, is essential to grasping the sacred. Nothing is sacred to the irreverent, and it should sadden and disgust all reverent Catholics that our bishop of Rome can smile complacently over such a display.
    The pope’s actions would redefine reverence for us–in a manner that is calculated to earn the praise of the world. Every Catholic should reject such an attempt–loudly and clearly.

  4. Thanks once again for the post and your thoughts. You’re probably right in thinking the guards were probably told in some way to stand down and allow what happened to happen. Or be accused of Pelagianism! Yeah, that’s it!

    • I don’t even think they were told. I suspect the have taken the measure of the new man, and knew he would have made them look stupid whilst looking good himself.

      In the end, every papal throne will have the protection the present occupier wants to give it.


  5. It is past time to stop the complaints and to start the actions. If your local Bishop does not provide for the Real Mass, find the nearest FSSP or ICK or SSPX parish and go to the Real Mass there and stay away from and stop supporting those who think you are atavistic pelagians.

    STOP begging for what is your right.

    Stop giving your money and support to those who refuse to restore to you what was so sinfully taken from you. Peter’s Pence? That has the same odds as receiving money from me as the odds are that the next Pope elected will be a woman from Japan named, Midori.

    Let the new church die – as it has been doing so rapidly the last fifty years – and support only the traditional orders.

    • I can’t say I disagree, Vermontcrank. At least if you extend to the very traditional, but also NO ones like the Oratorians.

      The faithful have the duty to support the Church, but it’s not that the conservative orders aren’t the Church. If the Vatican wants the SSPX to contribute to their expenses, well it’s very easy…

      As to a shame like the Kirchensteuer, that must certainly be avoided.


  6. For Benedict to embroider on his decision to abdicate to make way for someone so “charismatic” seems excessive. Knowing how the MSM and the general Catholic press would glom on to that, spin it to mean the papacy is so much better, so much more effective now, leaves me bewildered. Benedict knows what is good and true and enduring. I guess you are right, M, that Benedict also knows he cannot be responsible for the excesses of the MSM, and he was as charitable as he could be.in saying what he said. But, does he harbor at least a little regret that had he not abdicated, the Barque would not be where it is today. Where is the Barque? Is it in the doldrums?

    • In my eyes the mistake is not in the abdication – if he cannot, he cannot; I would be appalled at another JP II experience – but at the eight years wasted appointed horrible cardinals.

      If he had not been so V II in his choice of Cardinals, he could have abdicated twenty times in perfect relaxation, saying he does not want to be disturbed when the new man appears on the balcony.


  7. I’m only surprised that the footballer wasn’t lent a spare set of papal “whites”. Lack of imagination, obviously.

  8. Dear Mundabor. Sorry to have to disagree with your acceptance of the abdication but it was infinitely worse than this footballer in the chair as it treats in a naturalistic way an office divinely constituted.

    Now the Papacy will be increasingly seen as just another job and the symbols of it things to be treated with less and less reverence.

    There was not only Pope Blessed John Paul II who died that way but also the great Pope Pius XII – and many others before him.

    Ratzinger merely formalised the embrace of the enlightenment in the church with his abdication and our descent into democracy gained momentum.

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